Varsity football head coach Lon Passos expects commitment from his team. He expects his players to be committed to the football season, attend practice, and put in the required effort.
He said that commitment is important because “we have a younger team so it has to be a team effort.”
Coach Passos recognizes that the team is young, so his coaching staff “puts them in situations that are similar to a game, so they are used to encountering it.”
The team ended last season on a celebratory note when they won the Division II state championship title. They moved to Division I this season playing Iolani, Castle, Kaiser, Moanalua, Kahuku, Waianae, Aiea, and Campbell.
Coach Passos said that playing Kahuku should be the most difficult game of the season because they are the returning state champions, but recognizes that “every game will be tough for us.”
The football season hasn’t been merciful to the team so far. Radford has a 0-7 record.
Football fan Garrett McNutt (12) attended all, except for the Waianae, games. He said, “I think we just had a bad year. We were good but the other teams were better, especially after we moved up a division.”
Defensive Back /Wide Receiver Jonah Soakai (12) has been playing football at the school since his freshman year. He plays several positions including quarterback, receiver, safety, kick return, and punt return.
“We practice six days a week, Monday through Saturday between three-four hours, since beginning of August,” he said.
Despite the team’s losses, Soakai said that he keeps his teammates going by telling them to stay positive, and cheering them on to keep their momentum going.
“Our slogan this year is about family,” Soakai said. “It’s what I’ve been saying to the players since last quarter, when we started lifting. Coach Lon put it on the back of our t-shirts.”
Wide Receiver Ronin Lobederio (12) was on last year’s team and said that while the season is definitely challenging especially after coming from Division II to Division I, he said, “We’re up for the challenge.”
Lobederio said, “On a positive note, the players are determined. Through all the criticism, this team is still together and we work hard, regardless. I’m proud of that.”